Bluetooth off to a slow start

Microsoft and 3Com could delay the wireless standard that users eagerly await.

Users who juggle wireless devices such as mobile phones, pagers and handheld computers are eager to get their hands on Bluetooth. But the technology, announced last year, is taking longer than expected to get to market, and it will be two more years before it really takes off, analysts say.

Bluetooth is a standard for short-distance wireless communications, connecting devices at speeds up to 1 megabit per second and distances up to 10 metres.

Only a handful of working prototypes were shown at a Bluetooth pavilion at Comdex last week. Sweden's Ericsson Mobile Communications, a driving force behind Bluetooth, demonstrated a wireless handset for mobile phones. Port Washington, New York-based TDK USA demonstrated a Bluetooth PC Card that's likely to ship by June for $US100.

"Maybe the expectations on timing have been unrealistic," says Gerry Purdy, president and chief executive officer of Mobile Insights in California.

Bluetooth is also being held back because neither 3Com, the maker of the Palm, nor Microsoft, which develops Windows CE, has endorsed it.

"It's curious to me why they are not taking more of a leadership role," Purdy says. Officials from Microsoft and 3Com's Palm division who were at Comdex say they're watching the technology but made no commitments to support it.

Some Palm users are more enthusiastic. One visitor to the Bluetooth pavilion carried an Iridium satellite pager, a Motorola StarTAC phone, and a 3Com Palm on his belt. "Bluetooth would mean I could actually link my Palm to useful information all the time," says Harko Schwartz, president of NCME, a systems integrator in Philadelphia.

Purdy says Bluetooth will turn up in handheld computers, mobile phones, and laptops in a year and will be pervasive by late 2001.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?